What Goes Around

60 Comments

In the famous movie “Bhairav”, Prabhuji Mithun-da plays “double M. Com” “amazingly bhola” Shankar who metamorphoses into ruthless vigilante Bhairav in order to punish three women who falsely implicated him in a murder so as to get themselves off the hook (One of them had accidentally pushed the villain down the steps of a shopping mall after he had tried to molest all three of them at the same time. When the police came, they protected themselves by blaming it on an arbitrary person Shankar, whose admit card to the CA exam, they discovered lying around at the scene of the crime.)

After seven years in jail and after his family is wiped out by a big chocolate bomb, Bhairav comes back for baadlaa. The first girl he seduces and sends to a hotel while he goes to buy her wedding dress. But instead he calls the cops and gets her arrested as a call-girl. He barges into the wedding of the second and pretends to be her abandoned husband, thus also ruining her life. For the third woman (who actually committed the murder albeit accidentally) he disguises himself as her husband, gets her to make the obvious mistake and gets photographic evidence of her kissing him.

And just as you as an audience begin to sympathize with these three girls, thus so cruelly punished for one mistake, you remember that line:

Jo doosron ke ghar ujaad kar aapne ghar basaana chahte hain, unke ghar uparwala kabhi basne naheen deta.

[God never let those who seek to settle down by unsettling the house of others succeed]

Exhibit 1: Billionaire Allan Stanford bounced a British cricket player’s pregnant wife on his knee while shamelessly flirting with the wives of other cricketers [video]. Drunk with the arrogance of daulaat, he never realized ” doosre ki behen aur biwi pe nazar daalne waale ka kabhi accha naheen hota”. Now faced with multibillion dollar fraud charges, the shoe is now on the other foot. Or more precisely, the person who will be bouncing on somebody else’s knee has changed.

Exhibit 2: . The IPL has been forced to take its games outside India because of the General Elections.Good luck to the BCCI making money off matches being held in Johannesberg between teams representing Calcutta and Mohali. “Korbo lorbo dubbo re” indeed. [Do, fight and sink]

What has been interesting is that what began as Chidambaram’s objections to a clash of election dates in specific states with IPL matches (note the gentler tone of the objection here “The minister denied that he had suggested that IPL be postponed” and “To a query, Chidambaram said he did not want the IPL to move out of the country”) soon showed a not insignificant hardening of stance when Chidambaram insisted that match dates should not clash with elections in not just that state but also neighboring states , essentially rendering the IPL impossible.

Whether the IPL being held along with the elections would just have been an avoidable high-risk endeavor in today’s troubled times or whether the effective cancellation was a politically motivated decision by the Congress (note that most BJP states and also West Bengal gave the green signal for the IPL—-after all in times of recession, you need such things to get the cash flowing in local economies) is a matter of debate.

However considering what the IPL did and continues to do to the ICL, from refusing to let grounds maintained by state associations be used to running to the ground anyone who dares to be associated with the India Cricket League, in a manner that even the Triads would consider excessive in its retributive zeal, I cannot resist, even while sympathizing with the IPL, from saying “Bhagwan ke ghar main der hain par andher naheen hai.”

Finally is it a coincidence considering what has happened to IPL that one of the franchise owners in ICL is Mithun-da himself, who many believe has God’s cellphone number on speed dial.

Ai salaaaaaaaaaaa.

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60 thoughts on “What Goes Around

  1. The correlation between “What goes around” and IPL “hoodwinking” ICL doesn’t seem convincing Arnab. It seems you are just trying to sound neutral/impartial by bringing up this angle, so that you don’t sound like an IPL/Modi sympathizer.

    Other points are pretty convincing though.

  2. Wow. Seems like a great great movie, the one that you described. 🙂 Well, stadium admission fees are just a chicken nugget compared to the Double cheese double bacon Whopper of TV revenues. So they decided to take it overseas precisely because of that- as addicts like you, myself and millions of others will still watch it. The atmosphere will not be as electric, maybe the cheerleaders will also dance with more freedom, and the tournament will lose a bit of glamour. The name IPL, for this edition, is a misnomer.

    It is clear from Lalit Modi’s statements that such are the profits from staging the IPL that they are willing to take a cut in that huge profit rather than no profit at all. In that sense, it is a sensible decision.

    The Sanford video was funny too- note the attraction that money, power and fame have on women that they would happily jump on the billioanire’s (even though it may be accrued via a ponzi scheme) lap. But when Matt Prior watched it on the big screen, he was flummoxed. He He. You are a famous blogger GB. When will we see a video like that of you bouncing a few Savita Bhabis? 🙂

  3. Considering that the real money is from television, it doesn’t really matter much financially whether the matches are held in Johannesburg or Jhumri Talaiya. Sure, lack of crowds and atmosphere may prove a dampener, but not to the extent that it will be a total flop.

  4. For stuff like the IPL, atmosphere and crowd support is a big thing even for the TV audience to feel connected. As an example, I am sure ICL (which showcases a pretty high standard of cricket) would have been a much bigger hit if the teams were playing in their respective home-bases.

  5. GB,
    Great buildup, as usual.
    Though it feels great that India won a test in NZ after so many years, but one still wonders if things would have been the same if Shane Bond was around. And guess why he is not? – becuase of BCCI!
    I agree – what goes around, comes around.
    Keep them coming,
    Cheers,
    Salil

  6. Mithun-da himself, who many believe has God’s cellphone number on speed dial.

    That doesn’t make any sense why will he have his own number on speed dial. 😀

  7. I am going to be the typical middle class Indian and say it out straight- I am reeally pissed off that IPL has been moved out of the country just because Mayawati can become Prime Minister….Bah!!! Humbug!!!

  8. Here the expected account book for IPL profits:

    1. Tv revenue might not be to the extent had it been organized in India, mainly due to audience not feeling the same connetcion. But ehn , who knows, England/SA can have skimpier dressed cheer leaders which might prompt more viewers. Not to mention that Tv viewership in one of these two nation would rise too. Maybe IPL won’t get a chunk out of it, but it bodes well for the future.

    2. Revenue from Indian stadiun tickets would be lost. But in turn they gain some revenue from Englan/SA grounds. Operational margins in India would have been thinner anyways , more so because of the extra security arrangements.

    Not a bad decision considering the risks they were facing. Since terror-in-cricket is a relatively new acknowledgment, authorities could be better prepared if given time, like next year .

    Future for ICL meanwhile, still doesn’t look promising enuff. Though they might be getting the pleasure at the discomforts of IPL :).

  9. @GB – Offtopic, or may be not – How about a post on Prabhu’jees Grandmaster turn on the new Reality show – Dance India Dance – I happened to catch couple of episodes and he’s got some outrageous talent there!

  10. M.J. Akbar summerized it very well. Following is an excerpt from his article:

    The last SMS on my mobile as I left Delhi was from a friend who has been watching cricket — on the field, not in the drawing room — for more than four decades. His SMS was either a cry from the heart or a joke, or possibly a cry from the heart disguised as a joke. It will be safe, he wrote, to conduct the IPL tournament during the elections as almost all the criminals in India will be busy contesting the elections.

    Without dissecting the pleasantry with the heavy scalpel of bombast, consider this: if there was a vote on whether the cricket should be postponed or the elections, which way would the electorate go? Why miss out on a contest of skill and transparency when all we get in return is a murky game where a tribe of varied characters spend dubious money in a process that may not even declare a clear victor? At least the 20-20 rules do not permit indecision.

  11. I bet the ICL bosses would have been sitting at home and with a devilish smirk all through the IPL schedule drama. A classic example of David having some fun at Goliath’s expense.

    Interestingly Uddhav Thackrey dismissed the idea of Sharad Pawar’s candidature as PM by saying that the country does not need an IPL PM (Link: http://www.zeenews.com/nation/2009-03-19/516348news.html). It seems elections will soon be fought over cricket relegating the age old Bijli,Sadak,Panni(BSP) to the back seat.

  12. “Why miss out on a contest of skill and transparency when all we get in return is a murky game where a tribe of varied characters spend dubious money in a process that may not even declare a clear victor? At least the 20-20 rules do not permit indecision”

    Bah! If you are so keen to enjoy contests of skill and transparency, why don’t you follow Ranji or Duleep trophy matches? IPL is nothing more than a sexed-up version of Ranji trophy. It is preposterous to compare this pointless annual tamasha with general elections. Not that elections have any greater sanctity. But nevertheless it shouldn’t be forgotten that without these five yearly exercises, India might have ended up in a situation not much different from Pakistan.

    Its quite ridiculous that we should be talking about a local pyjama cricket tournament (a few imported jocks and some heavyweight movie stars/business tycoons added to make it sound more important than it really is) and general elections of the ‘world’s largest democracy’ (yeah..its a cliche, but true nevertheless) in the same breadth. But that’s the sort of world that we live in, a world where hype provide meaning instead of the inverse..

  13. actually i am with congress on this one. they have made a candid admission that we lack the wherewithall to conduct sporting events in india…. better to be safe than sorry

    last year during ipl, 100 people lost their lives in jaipur the same day srk was busy jumping up and down akhtar’s chest…

    our security forces are spread thin… elections are important to a democracy; mj akbar’s wisecracks notwithstanding… and even when i know for sure that UPA in some form will come back as the next govt (and i m gona throw up, as i cannot stand MMS and that italian babe ruling us), i still think sacrificing IPL on home grounds is not that bad..

  14. 1. For those who think stadium revenues are “nuggets”, please do some homework. In fact KKR made a profit solely because of gate receipts, which even a 12th standard kid can conclude: http://searchandhra.com/featured-news/featured-3/franchise-profits-loss-in-ipl-twenty20-league

    2. So IPL is pyjama cricket. I bet you don’t call English Premier League “pyjama football”. Don’t give me crap like “that is actual football”. IPL is as actual cricket as can be. Look at the performance of Indian cricket post IPL. IPL has basically decoupled the performance of top Indian batsmen such that now they perform independent of each other, and not like the olden days when Tendulkar out, to “har gelo re”.

    3. ICL has got its dues, whatever, but the bottomline is the terrorists, without any preparation, have stopped the flagship tournament from happening, one because of which India was the cricket capital of the world. Now we are clubbed with scumbag countries of the world. Jai Ho! As they say, fear is the objective of terrorism, deaths are just the by-product.

    4. You think the terrorists can be stopped next year without the elections? Hah. If you know the kind of security arrangements which remain in place, you can conclude that if they want to attack, they will. If they can’t protect 11 crickers, what will they do about 100 crore Indians?

  15. Great post GB, Definitely, what Goes Around, does Come Around!

    And this will happen for India as well. If they can’t provide security to two major events in a month, how does the world expect them to host the world cup or Asian Games or the Olympics in the near future?

    And the last line, just nailed it. Btw, I’ve linked your post to mine 🙂

  16. @iceberg, pyjama cricket or not, its just not important enough to lose sleep over. As far as English Premier league is concerned, I consider it to be equally unimportant – real football, yes, but not important enough for British government to divert security if its general elections were going on at the same time..(assuming of course holding elections in UK was as much of a security nightmare as holding Indian elections are)

    [Link]

    “Because I doubt the protests by some and the whining by hacks in some publications has little to do with the ideological dilemma. Much of the brouhaha has to do with a cheap obsession with profits and incomes. If you were to believe the rant it seems it is the duty of the government to make security available to IPL so that the organisers, owners and sponsors don’t lose money. May I ask: “Is the Government of India the Profit Guarantee Corporation for IPL?” Worse, the unstated belief amongst the 35 per cent nonvoting class of the country is that the elections have little to do with their lives. It is borne out of a vicarious, perverse belief that elections is for the huddled masses. This rant orchestra is being conducted by spoilt middle-class brats who are enraged at being robbed of their summer night entertainment.”

  17. @Sanchita:

    “I am going to be the typical middle class Indian and say it out straight- I am reeally pissed off that IPL has been moved out of the country just because Mayawati can become Prime Minister….Bah!!! Humbug!!!”

    Actually I think this has reduced the chances for Mayavati to become PM. If you consider at the demographics, the middle class who would hate to have a Mayavati as PM, might now actually go out and vote for a party that would preclude Mayavati from positions of power!

  18. “…the bottomline is the terrorists, without any preparation, have stopped the flagship tournament from happening, one because of which India was the cricket capital of the world.”

    Arun Jaitley said something similar recently. But let’s just stop to think for a moment. It was hardly 4 months back that we had 173 people killed in a terrorist attack on Bombay. And Bombay is one of the better policed cites in India. Do we have any idea of how cities like Vizag, Jaipur (there’s been a bomb blast there as well), and Delhi (bomb blast victim) are protected? Do we know how difficult it is to secure 8-10 cricket venues all around the country, when we are also simultaneously holding GENERAL ELECTIONS (I write in caps since Jaitley and other “nationalists” seem to be forgetting that) in the country?

    Let’s talk about the police and paramilitary troops. We just assume they are supermen and that they can be easily deployed from city to city, state to state at an instant’s notice and they they need no rest, no sleep, no break. I was reading somewhere that during state elections in Maharashtra, policemen are on duty 24 hours, sometimes a week at a stretch – no leaves, no breaks, sometimes no sleep. But we think nothing of blithely wanting them to secure our elections, and then merrily tripping to Brabourne or DY Patil stadium so that ppl can watch a corporate event (read cricket match) safely, and then go back to their posts for the next phase of elections!

    Unfortunately our faith in the infallibility of our police, while patriotic and warranted in most cases, is not very realistic. I am pretty sure that the police personnel are silently thanking heavens that the additional IPL responsibility is gone.

    Even assuming that the chances of a terrorist attack in minimal, can we even take a chance with the lives of spectators and sportsmen from all around the world right now? We already have seen the canard of sportsmen being immune to terrorism being blown apart. To irreparably ruin cricket in the subcontinent, the same terrorists wouldn’t even have to do anything significant. Exploding a firecracker outside the dressing room window of Barabati Stadium in Orissa would be enough to create panic and mayhem because of the international nature of the tournament. And then Mr. Jaitley and supporters would be the first to blame the government for lack of security!

    I for one, don’t blame the central, and especially the state government(s) for refusing to spare police and paramilitary forces for what is a private corporate event. Priorities are clear. Elections are far more important. And that’s how I hope we should all think.

    And look at the bright side – better grounds, better facilities, better camera coverage, fewer B-grade celebrities mugging for the cameras, no traffic jams – what’s not to like? The sideeshow should happen abroad every year!

  19. -ritika
    are u doubting prabhuji’s knowledge ..chant “Ai salaaaaaaaaaaa” 108 times before sleep and he will give you darshan in your dreams.

  20. @Shan..rightly said. Assume if IPL had happened in India and there was some unfortunate event, it would surely have been far deeper implications. It may not sound very good but thank god its happening outside this time.

  21. @ Shan

    Even if all of the 250 million or so middle class Indians who are eligible to vote do turn out they will be outnumbered 2:1 by the 450-500 million or so rural voters among whom Behenji has plenty of support. Add to it, the hysteria of the Indian media about the prospect of an untouchable woman becoming PM, Mayawati is the person to watch out for these elections. Even if she does not become PM, she will be a major power broker in the next govt. especially since neither UPA nor NDA will manage to get a majority on their own. The impact of the middle class on elections will be diddly squats like always.

  22. But Shaan, why isn’t anyone asking the EC, why did they announce April as the Election dates when the IPL schedule was announced way in advance?

    It is definitely impractical with the stuffed international tours cricketers have these days to shift dates.

    But it isn’t like elections cannot be held in any other month. They still had time before the monsoon begins.

  23. @Rakesh:

    You cannot be serious.

    Are you actually suggesting that an Election Commission postpone GENERAL ELECTIONS (again in caps, for the significance seems to have passed you by) because there might be a corporate cricket tournament at the same time?

    Next you will be asking for colleges to postpone their annual exams for the same reason. Hey, after all it is the IPL!

    You might just Lalit Modi’s wet dream – the kind of person who puts cricket, regardless of whether it is club or national cricket, above everything else – including elections or examinations. 🙂

  24. “And this will happen for India as well. If they can’t provide security to two major events in a month, how does the world expect them to host the world cup or Asian Games or the Olympics in the near future?”

    @Rakesh: Fyi, asian games or commonwealth games are governmental endeavors, not profit-making commercial private inter-city club tournaments. Why can’t IPL arrange its own security? They sure do have the resources to import the best security services from anywhere in the world, but typically expect the government to come to their rescue.

    ‘Privatize the profits, nationalize the risks/losses’ seems to be the mantra of the bania class all over the world!

  25. Shaan Ayan

    I didn’t say POSTPONE (emphasis in CAPS). I said why did they announce April in the first place?

    I said, IPL schedule was announced months before Elections. Why wasn’t it taken into consideration while fixing election dates? Doesn’t the EC consider important events like Diwali, World Cups (if held in India), Asian Games (if held in India) while deciding on the election dates.

    No wet dream talk here…

  26. @Essbee: I’m not sure about this but wasn’t the IPL paying for any security at all? I think it was at least arranging for some private security as well in addition to the security provided by govt… Neverthless, if you have the facts let me know.

    Secondly, I’m thinking, will the IPL pay the England or SA government for security?

    Isn’t security the right of every individual and establishment, profit making or not?

    Btw I did hear that the IPL ordered a certain number of Bullet Proof Vehicles for security of the players.

  27. @Rakesh:

    “Isn’t security the right of every individual and establishment, profit making or not?”

    Sure! Considering the number of terrorist attacks in recent times at public places like railway stations, I think even I need security. Does that mean I’m entitled to personal security provided to me free of cost by government?

    Get real. Indian governments don’t have unlimited number of forces at their disposal to provide security for every person who feels threatened. Obviously, GOI has no option but to prioritize whenever demand for security exceeds the capacity..and obviously, general elections would be a greater priority than a club cricket tournament for any sensible government.

    I don’t know whether UK or SA will charge IPL for providing security, but I will be surprised if they don’t.

    Your point that EC was aware of IPL dates and hence shouldn’t have declared elections during the same period is plainly ridiculous. If dozen different sports tournaments/religious functions were being held in twelve different months of the year, should elections be postponed to 2010?

  28. Ok, IPL is a BCCI thingy.. and it has enough money… why can’t they simply employ their own security ppl and let the politicians and their security be. And as far as the decision of central government goes, its the PRIMARY DUTY of the Government and all the agencies associated with it to get the elections done in proper way. So, all of the people who think that the central government is being irresponsible, its not wanting IPL clashing with elections is a sensible decision… because, I am sure that apart from the security concerns its about ppl going and voting..and less security anyway would mean lot of goonda gardi in elections…Imagine, not having a government and lawless state, but having the stupid IPL, which is nothing but about money and business…

  29. @Iceberg-

    Fair point. Eden raking in the highest gate revenue is not surprising. But still….its a mere slice of the revenue pie as compared to the TV revenues chunk right? Look at it from the perspective of priority. No TV revenues = no IPL. Simple. But that turnstile money that the franchises would be losing can easily be curbed, if not fully compensated. Gujratis know their business better than anybody else. 🙂

    Here’s how:

    http://www.business-standard.com/india/news/dealwsg-could-help-ipl-partially-recoup-losses/352755/

    But still, with the lion’s share from the TV money, its still win if not win win, after all other expenses and compensations, for the BCCI. So they decided to take the matches overseas.

  30. @Esbee: “If dozen different sports tournaments/religious functions were being held in twelve different months of the year, should elections be postponed to 2010?”

    The question is IF? There aren’t such huge events held every month of the year. There was a clear way to avoid this clash. I don’t see any reason to not hold elections in May. EC knew about the IPL dates. But I think, they just FORGOT. At least, it wouldn’t have given India a tag of unsafe. Do you think now that the ICC wouldn’t be considering shifting the 2011 world cup out of India when they see even the club cricket tournament being shifted?

    That’s what I meant when I said What goes around… will come around to haunt BCCI.

    There is no dispute on what is more important? Of course, Elections are a far higher priority compared to IPL. And I’m no fan of IPL anyway. But the question is, was this clash avoidable? Isn’t this bad news for all the people who were expected to gain from the IPL – I mean state cricket boards, hotel operators, tour operators, domestic airlines etc. etc. Millions would’ve been spend, isn’t that great in times of a recession?

  31. I guess for us away from home it does not make a difference. We watch it on TV anyways.

    Elections are indeed more important.

    It’s a pity that a sport needs such security. Damn terrorists !

  32. @Rakesh: Elections will continue till May’13th and from june begins monsoon season. So I don’t think they had that much room for maneuvering. But that’s not really the point. Why should EC care about IPL? Lalit Modi had the audacity to say that the country cannot come to a standstill because of elections. So should country come to a standstill because of a club cricket tournament? Is it GOI/EC’s fault that the cricket schedule is so tight that IPL couldn’t have been fitted in any other month? If IPL moolah is so important that it cannot be canceled even for a single year than why doesn’t ICC, BCCI and other cricketing bodies try to relax the tight schedules of cricket playing nations?

    Its all about profits and money, not about cricket and its because of millions of fans like you who can never get enough of cricket which has created a situation where cricketers are forced to spend all the year playing in four corners of the world without taking a break.

    As far as tag of unsafe is concerned, India has seen enough terrorism to be tagged as unsafe and that wouldn’t change even if the tournament was held safely. If white cricketers are still willing to play in India its only because they can’t resists the millions offered to them to play for IPL.

  33. @Essbee: I told you, I’m no fan of club cricket, neither of the overpacked schedules but you seem to tread on your own trail.

    Yes it is all about Money and that is what bugs me. I would’ve been glad to see Indian businesses making a lot of money and people getting employment because of the IPL. That is what upsets me. Not the cricket. I hardly watch IPL.

  34. Mithun-da himself, who many believe has God’s cellphone number on speed dial.

    But how does Mithunda answer the call when he calls his own cellphone?

  35. Dont know if anyone will go stadium here in SA to watch a match at 12:30 pm in the afternoon between bangalore and kolkata..

    lets see.. u can’t compare eden with wanderers .. or kotla with newlands .. 😦

  36. Pingback: IPL Goes the NRI Way « Located in Dubai but Heart in India

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